Past Institutes

The Harlem Renaissance

On March 6, 2015, Humanities Texas held a workshop in Houston focusing on the literature and history of the Harlem Renaissance.


The program included a historical introduction to the Harlem Renaissance and focused consideration of the writings of Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston.

Fifty-one teachers attended the workshop. Faculty helped participants develop ideas for effective writing and research assignments related to the Harlem Renaissance. Content was aligned with the secondary English and language arts TEKS. Teachers received books and other instructional materials and were trained in the examination and interpretation of primary sources.


Workshop faculty included Cary D. Wintz (Texas Southern University), Heather D. Russell (Florida International University), and Brian A. Bremen and Jennifer M. Wilks from The University of Texas at Austin.

Program resources

Our March 2015 newsletter included a slideshow of images from the workshop. Our February 2015 newsletter included a transcript of Cary Wintz’s talk, “The Harlem Renaissance: What Was It, and Why Does It Matter?” and a complete, digitized issue of The Negro American, a Harlem Renaissance era magazine published in San Antonio.

For our spring 2014 workshop on the Harlem Renaissance, Humanities Texas assembled a number of online educational resources related to the Harlem Renaissance and its history, literature, and culture. These websites include primary source documents, lesson plans, photographs, and other interactive elements that will enhance classroom instruction and student comprehension.

As part of our Author Index, Humanities Texas has developed webpages on Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. Each author page includes links to the first and significant publications of commonly taught texts; early reviews of the author's work; excerpts of critical reviews of that author's work; and suggestions for lessons, discussion, and activities.

Location and schedule

The workshop overview details the program's schedule and participants.


The workshop was made possible with major funding from the State of Texas, with ongoing support from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Humanities Texas thanks Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens for hosting the program.

Questions about Teacher Institutes

Call 512.440.1991 or email

Workshop participants at the Lora Jean Kilroy Visitor and Education Center at Houston’s Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens.
Brian A. Bremen, associate professor of English at The University of Texas at Austin, delivers a lecture on teaching critical reading skills, using Countee Cullen’s sonnet “Yet I Do Marvel” as an example.
Heather D. Russell, associate professor of English at Florida International University, leads an examination of the writings of Zora Neale Hurston during an afternoon workshop.